Judicial protection in the European Economic Area


On 17 June 2011 the EFTA Court hosted a conference dedicated to the Judicial Protection in the European Economic Area at the Cercle Municipal in Luxembourg.  The Conference addressed issues relating to Access to Justice in the EFTA pillar of the EEA, such as infringement actions brought by the EFTA Surveillance Authority before the EFTA Court and aspects of the Court’s preliminary reference procedure. Under the title Doing Justice, the Conference then discussed the organisation and workings of the judicial mechanism of the EFTA pillar, such as the number and nomination of judges, the absence of an advocate general and effects of and compliance with EFTA Court rulings. The third topic of the Conference was the Two EEA Courts and the complex relations which exist between the EFTA Court and the Court of Justice of the European Union with regard to the aim of establishing a homogeneous Economic Area, judicial dialogue and judicial conflict.

Key-note speakers were Dr Sven Norberg, Senior Advisor of Kreab & Gavin Anderson, Former Judge of the EFTA Court and Former Director at DG Competition of the European Commission, Professor Dr Hans Petter Graver, Dean of the Law School of the University of Oslo and Professor Eleanor Sharpston, Advocate General at the Court of Justice of the European Union.

Panelists were Professor Páll Hreinsson, Justice of the Supreme Court of Iceland, Sabine Monauni-Tömördy, Member of the EFTA Surveillance Authority College, Professor Dr John Temple Lang, Partner Consultant at Cleary Gottlieb Brussels, Senior Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Oxford and a Visiting Professor at Trinity College, Dublin, Former Director at DG Competition of the European Commission, Professor Dr Allan Rosas, Judge of the Court of Justice of the European Union, Professor Róbert R. Spanó, Dean of the Faculty of Law of the University of Iceland, Siri Teigum, Attorney at Law, Thommessen, Oslo, Dr. Halvard H. Fredriksen, Senior Researcher at the University of Bergen, Martin Johansson, Attorney at Law, Vinge, Brussels, Former Legal Secretary of the EFTA Court, the Court of First Instance and the Court of Justice of the European Union, Prof. Dr Christian Kohler, University of the Saarland, Former Director General of Research and Documentation of the Court of Justice of the European Union.

President Carl Baudenbacher opened the Conference. The three subjects were presided by Judge Thorgeir Örlygsson, Judge Per Christiansen and Registrar Skúli Magnússon.

H.E. Jean-René Germanier visits the EFTA Court


On 15 February, H.E. Jean-René Germanier, President of the Federal Assembly of the Swiss Confederation, paid a visit to the Court. President Germanier was accompanied by H.E. Philippe Guex, Ambassador of the Swiss Confederation to the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, and Mr Christoph Lanz, Secretary General to the Federal Assembly of the Swiss Confederation.

President Carl Baudenbacher - Speeches at the public sitting of 13 January 2011


Farewell and thanks to Judge Henrik Bull and the Introduction of Judge Per Christiansen…

Judge Henrik Bull’s farewell speech


Speech of Judge Henrik Bull at the public sitting on 13 January 2011.

Swearing in of new ESA College Member


The EFTA Court, pursuant to Article 8 of the ESA/Court Agreement, held a public sitting on the 29 June, for the swearing in of Ms. Sabine Monauni-Tömördy as a new college member of the EFTA Surveillance Authority.

Some remarks on the EFTA Court


Statement made by Carl Baudenbacher, President of the EFTA Court, at the Geneva seminar of 10 December 2009 on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of EFTA and the 15th Anniversary of the EEA.

The EFTA Court Fifteen Years On


by Prof. Dr. Carl Baudenbacher, President of the EFTA Court

The EEA Agreement is based on a two pillar structure, the EC forming one pillar and EEA/EFTA the other. EEA law originates in EC law. The EFTA States have no co-decision rights in drafting new EC legislation, but they enjoy participation rights in the decision-shaping phase and they may veto the adoption of new EC legislation into the EEA/EFTA pillar. (read more)

Carl Baudenbacher elected President of the EFTA Court for a third term


Carl Baudenbacher has been elected President of the EFTA Court for a third three-year term on 6 January 2009. In 1995, Mr Baudenbacher, a Swiss citizen, was appointed to the EFTA bench upon a proposal by Principality of Liechtenstein. Since 2003, he has been the Court’s President. The EFTA Court, the ECJ’s sister Court in the EEA, consists of three judges and six ad hoc judges from its member states of Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.

European Courts in Luxembourg – The Civil Service Tribunal Visits the EFTA Court


The Judges and staff of the Civil Service Tribunal paid the EFTA Court a visit last Thursday 28 February. Although different in many respects, these two courts have important elements in common, one of them being their relative small size in comparison to other European Courts and institutions in Luxembourg. The EFTA Court extends its gratitude to the members and staff of the Staff Tribunal for a enjoyable and productive visit.

Photo to be published.

A successful Seminar for National Judges in Reykjavík


On 21 February, the Icelandic Judges' Association and the EFTA Court jointly gave a Seminar for Icelandic judges in Reykjavik, on aspects of EEA Law particularly relevant to national judges.

Participants were 30, which accounts for a handsome proportion of the Icelandic Judiciary. Judge Eggert Óskarsson, Chairman of the Icelandic Judges' Association, opened the Seminar by stating the joint intention of the organisers to maintain and reinforce the good relations that have been established, over the past years, between the Court and Icelandic judges.

The Seminar was chaired by judge Benedikt Bogason, vice-chairman of the Association and ad-hoc judge at the EFTA Court. Speakers were Mr. Skuli Magnusson, Registrar of the EFTA Court, Mr. Gjermund Mathisen and Ms. Kristin Haraldsdottir, legal secretaries of the EFTA Court.

In his introduction, Mr. Magnusson stated the Court’s intentions to organise seminars with national judges in the EEA/EFTA States on a regular basis. Indeed, plans for a similar seminar in Norway this autumn, are well under way. Lectures were followed by lively discussion, in which Stefán Geir Þórisson, advocate and veteran in EFTA Court proceedings, participated upon a special invitation of the Judges´ Association.

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